Rare Burges Furniture with Literary Connections Acquired for Bedford Museum

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BEDFORD.- Cecil Higgins Art Gallery & Bedford Museum has purchased a unique piece of furniture created by one of the UK’s most celebrated 19th Century makers. The rare item is a unique Zodiac settle designed by a leading figure of the 19th century Gothic Revival movement, William Burges. Designed for his own use, the Zodiac Settle (built around 1869) is an ornate canopied bench that combines the form of an Italian Renaissance day-bed with a castellated canopy. Subject to a temporary export bar as part of the work of the Reviewing Committee on the Export of Works of Art and Objects of Cultural Interest (RCEWA), this unique and experimental piece of furniture has been acquired thanks to a £480,000 grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund (NHMF), £190,000 from the Trustees of the Cecil Higgins Art Gallery and £180,000 from the Art Fund. Previousl